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Bito42

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Does having an MPH significantly improve your chances of matching in a a higher ranked program? For instance--if someone were to do average on their Step 1, but have an MPH, would they be considered in competative programs (i.e. IM at the 'top' programs) despite their boards performance?
 

yaah

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Why do you have the MPH? If you have the MPH just to get ranked higher, then no. If you have extensive experience in public health and plan to use this in some fashion (research, public advocacy, whatever), then it will come up on your interviews and personal statements, etc, and may or may not make you a better candidate.

If you're asking that since you got a bad step I score, would it benefit you to now go do an MPH? No, it probably wouldn't. Because you'd be doing it for the wrong reasons. Most people who do MPHs do them because they have an interest in the area.
 

Winged Scapula

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SIGNIFICANTLY? No.

If having an MPH fits with your career plans, and you find a residency program willing and able to help you succeed in those, then having the MPH helps...for THOSE programs.

But in general, an MPH does not make a significant difference in obtaining a residency nor does it make up for less stellar performance elsewhere on your application.
 
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07match

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I did a year long research fellowship during med school, which resulted in some publications and poster presentations. Several of my close friends decided to do a year of research or an MPH. Motives for doing this are more complicated than either purely to help with residency placement or purely for the academic experience. In my experience, the honest answer for the individual usually involves both of those motives and some other reasons. No one that I know who did this would claim the main reason to do an MPH was to be more competitive.

It's safe to assume that regardless of motives, having an MPH will help you get into certain residency programs. My research year was a main focus of >75% of my Medicine interviews.
 

Bito42

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Of course matching isn't my reason for the MPH, but rather it could influence the TIMING of my MPH. If I were to do it during residency, I could have more of a grasp of my research interests. But knowing it helps a bit for residency would give me a reason to consider doing it earlier.
 

gutonc

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Of course matching isn't my reason for the MPH, but rather it could influence the TIMING of my MPH. If I were to do it during residency, I could have more of a grasp of my research interests. But knowing it helps a bit for residency would give me a reason to consider doing it earlier.

Here's a purely selfish reason to consider doing it during residency (assuming you match at a program that supports this kind of thing). If you do it as a student, you get to pay for another year of school and go another year w/o any sort of salary (YMMV @ your particular program of course). If you do iy during residency, you will usually get to do it not just for free, but you will probably get your salary during that year(s) as well. Just something else to add into the calculus. If you're already a good candidate from a decent school, the MPH is unlikely to make a huge amount of difference in matching.
 

Winged Scapula

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I agree with brooklyneric - the help it will get you in obtaining a residency is pretty small although it does provide interesting fodder for interview discussions. The same goes for almost all advanced degrees - they are not a significant contributor toward residency.

However, doing it during residency would allow you to:

1) perhaps do it for free

2) take time off from clinical work and get more rest during residency

3) focus your research interests (as you note)

4) continue to receive a salary
 
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